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A Multidisciplinary Journal of Environmental Sciences, Ecology, and Public Health

The rise in global environmental issues such as air and water pollution, climate change, overflowing landfills and clearcutting have all lead to increased government regulations. There is now a trend towards sustainability in the pulp and paper industry as it moves to reduce clear cutting, water use, greenhouse gas emissions, fossil fuel consumption and clean up its impacts on local water supplies and air pollution.

According to a Canadian citizen's organization, "People need paper products and we need sustainable, environmentally safe production.

Environmental product declarations or product scorecards are available to collect and evaluate the environmental and social performance of paper products, such as the Paper Calculator [2] , Environmental Paper Assessment Tool EPAT , [3] or Paper Profile. Pulp and paper generates the third largest amount of industrial air, water, and land emissions in Canada and the sixth largest in the United States. Worldwide, the pulp and paper industry is the fifth largest consumer of energy, accounting for four percent of all the world's energy use.

The pulp and paper industry uses more water to produce a ton of product than any other industry. The de-inking process during paper recycling is also a source of emissions due to chemicals released in the effluent. Plantation forests , from where the majority of wood for pulping is obtained, is generally a monoculture and this raises concerns over the ecological effects of the practice.

Much of the wood harvested in North America goes into lumber and other non-paper products. Deforestation is often seen as a problem in developing countries but also occurs in the developed world.

Woodchipping to produce paper pulp is a contentious environmental issue in Australia. The National Emissions Inventory in the U. Several PBTs are emitted by the pulp and paper industry at measurable levels, including lead, hexachlorobenzene HCB , dioxins, furans and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

There are other important releases to air by the pulp and paper industry. Fine particulate matter PM 2. The pulp and paper industry in the U. NOx and SOx are major contributors of acid rain and CO 2 is a greenhouse gas responsible for climate change.

In , the pulp and paper industry in North America was responsible for about 0. Wastewater discharges for a pulp and paper mill contains solids, nutrients and dissolved organic matter such as lignin. It also contains alcohols , and chelating agents and inorganic materials like chlorates and transition metal compounds.

Nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus can cause or exacerbate eutrophication of fresh water bodies such as lakes and rivers. Organic matter dissolved in fresh water, measured by biological oxygen demand BOD , changes ecological characteristics. Wastewater may also be polluted with organochlorine compounds. Some of these are naturally occurring in the wood, but chlorine bleaching of the pulp produces far larger amounts. The pulp and paper industry is also associated with important emissions of heavy metals.

In Canada, for example, this industry is the third source of lead Pb emissions to water [27] In the U. Levels of discharge have not changed significantly since that time. Recycling the effluent see black liquor and burning it, using bioremediation ponds and employing less damaging agents in the pulping and bleaching processes can help reduce water pollution.

Discharges can also discolour the water leading to reduced aesthetics. This has happened with the Tarawera River in New Zealand which subsequently became known as the "black drain". Paper recycling mitigates this impact, but not the environmental and economic impact of the energy consumed by manufacturing, transporting and burying and or reprocessing paper products. Chlorine and compounds of chlorine are used in the bleaching of wood pulp , especially chemical pulps produced by the kraft process or sulfite process.

In the past, plants using elemental chlorine produced significant quantities of dioxin s [31] , persistent and very toxic organic pollutants. As a result, dioxin production was also significantly reduced. Environmental Protection Agency EPA data concluded that "Studies of effluents from mills that use oxygen delignification and extended delignification to produce ECF elemental chlorine free and TCF pulps suggest that the environmental effects of these processes are low and similar.

TCF bleaching, by removing chlorine from the process, reduces chlorinated organic compounds to background levels in pulp mill effluent. On the one hand, paper and chemical industry-funded studies have generally found that there is no environmental difference between ECF and TCF effluents.

Sulfur -based compounds are used in both the kraft process and the sulfite process for making wood pulp. Sulfur is generally recovered, with the exception of ammonia-based sulfite processes, but some is released as sulfur dioxide during combustion of black liquor , a byproduct of the kraft process, or "red liquor" from the sulfite process.

Sulfur dioxide is of particular concern because it is water-soluble and is a major cause of acid rain. A modern kraft pulp mill is more than self-sufficient in its electrical generation and normally will provide a net flow of energy to the local electrical grid.

Air emissions of hydrogen sulfide , methyl mercaptan , dimethyl sulfide , dimethyl disulfide , and other volatile sulfur compounds are the cause of the odor characteristic of pulp mills utilizing the kraft process.

Other chemicals that are released into the air and water from most paper mills include the following: Bleaching mechanical pulp is not a major cause for environmental concern since most of the organic material is retained in the pulp, and the chemicals used hydrogen peroxide and sodium dithionite produce benign byproducts water and, eventually, sodium sulfate , respectively.

However, the bleaching of chemical pulps has the potential to cause significant environmental damage, primarily through the release of organic materials into waterways. Pulp mills are almost always located near large bodies of water because they require substantial quantities of water for their processes. An increased public awareness of environmental issues from the s and s, as evidenced by the formation of organizations like Greenpeace , influenced the pulping industry and governments to address the release of these materials into the environment.

Conventional bleaching using elemental chlorine produces and releases into the environment large amounts of chlorinated organic compounds , including chlorinated dioxins. Dioxins are highly toxic, and health effects on humans include reproductive, developmental, immune and hormonal problems. They are known to be carcinogenic. Greenhouse gas emissions from the pulp and paper industry are generated from the combustion of fossil fuels required for raw material production and transportation, wastewater treatment facilities, purchased power, paper transportation, printed product transportation, disposal and recycling.

Disposing of paper in landfill sites, and subsequent breakdown and production of methane a potent greenhouse gas also adds to the carbon footprint of paper products. This is another reason why paper recycling is beneficial for the environment. At pulp and paper mills in the U. Clay or calcium carbonate are used as fillers for some papers. Analytes in effluent higher than most concentrations reported for large wastewater treatment plants in the United States.

Whole-body fish tissue concentrations of CECs elevated for some analytes and occur at greater than expected concentrations. Several compounds were observed at concentrations that may result in adverse responses in biota. Loading of CEC analytes to estuaries considered substantial and expected to increase with human population growth.

This study was designed to assess the occurrence and concentrations of a broad range of contaminants of emerging concern CECs from three local estuaries within a large estuarine ecosystem. In addition to effluent from two wastewater treatment plants WWTP , we sampled water and whole-body juvenile Chinook salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha and Pacific staghorn sculpin Leptocottus armatus in estuaries receiving effluent.

We analyzed these matrices for compounds, which included pharmaceuticals, personal care products PPCPs , and several industrial compounds. Controlling and preventing lead poisoning was described as a long-term mission. China is a signatory nation of the Stockholm Convention , a treaty to control and phase out major persistent organic pollutants POP. A plan of action for includes objectives such as eliminating the production, import and use of the pesticides covered under the convention, as well as an accounting system for PCB containing equipment.

For , China plans to establish an inventory of POP-contaminated sites and remediation plans. Perfluorinated compounds are associated with altered thyroid function and decreased sperm count in humans.

The Yellow dust or Asian dust is a seasonal dust cloud which affects Northeast Asia during late winter and springtime. The dust originates in the deserts of Mongolia , northern China and Kazakhstan where high-speed surface winds and intense dust storms kick up dense clouds of fine, dry soil particles.

These clouds are then carried eastward by prevailing winds and pass over Northern China into Korea and Japan. Desertification has intensified in China. The increasing number of air pollutants can cause incidences of low visibility for days and acid rain. The policy provided homes and offices with free coal for winter heating, but was limited solely to the Northern region due to budget limitations.

The policy led to a dramatic increase in coal consumption and production. Coal production alongside rapid economic growth has increased the emission of harmful pollutants such as carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and small particle matter known as PM2. Coal is a huge issue because of the SO2 emissions from coal factories. In 49 employees at Wintek were poisoned by n- hexane in the manufacturing of touchscreens for Apple products.

In , it was revealed that portions of the country's rice supply were tainted with the toxic metal cadmium. A Chinese green gross domestic product estimate stated that pollution in cost 3. A study stated that pollution had little effect on economic growth which in China's case was largely dependent on physical capital expansion and increased energy consumption due to the dependency on manufacturing and heavy industries.

China was predicted to continue to grow using energy-inefficient and polluting industries. While growth may continue, the rewards of this growth may be opposed by the harm from the pollution unless environmental protection is increased.

A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that severe pollution during the s cut five and a half 5. A study from the non-profit organization Berkeley Earth estimated that 1. Even in the case of the latest plan, experts [ who? This is because economic growth is still the primary issue for the government, and overrides environmental protection [ citation needed ]. However, if the measures to cut coal usage were applied strictly, it would also mean the dismantling of the local economy that is highly reliant on heavy industry.

Everything revolves around this steel factory — our children work here. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources.

Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. August Learn how and when to remove this template message. Electronic waste in China. Air pollution in Taiwan. This article needs to be updated. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. See chapter 12 entitled "China, Lurching Giant" pages Beijing starts the biggest shutdown of steel factories in history".

Retrieved 6 March Retrieved 13 March Explicit use of et al. The Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 29 July Retrieved 27 February The New York Times. A similar approach was used for other events such as the China Victory Day Parade and the G20 Hangzhou summit. Review of Environmental Economics and Policy. Environmental Management and Health. This sentence of the book has a note citing the reference: Yuyu Chen et al.

Retrieved 4 April Journal of Environmental Sciences. Retrieved 4 March Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. Xie Chuanjiao China Daily. Formation and evolution of low-volatility organics in the atmosphere". United States Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved 7 October Embassy air quality data undercut China's own assessments".

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